More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
GLAAD in Talks to Train WWE Talent After Anti-Gay Incident
GLAAD is in discussions with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) to train its on-air talent, including its performers, following another anti-gay outburst by a WWE personality over the 4th of July weekend.
At a live WWE event in Australia, wrestler CM Punk was caught on camera directing an anti-gay slur towards a heckler. While the show was not broadcast, that doesn't excuse his remarks. On his Twitter account, the wrestler actually thanked the TMZ website for airing the video and apologized for what he'd said.
WWE told TMZ: "WWE does not condone this type of language or bias and we reinforce that with our talent who are independent contractors."
As for how this fits in with our ongoing work with WWE, GLAAD provided training to members of WWE's editorial staff and writing team in May, but because this event was not intended to be televised, and it took place during an unscripted interaction with the audience, none of the people we had already trained were involved. As a result, we are now in discussions with WWE to provide trainings to its on-camera talent, including the wrestlers themselves.
WWE officials also told GLAAD this morning that CM Punk's contract will expire in a few weeks, he will not be immediately renewed, and he will no longer be with WWE as of July 18. A spokesperson told us "this departure is not part of a storyline. He is contractually leaving the organization."
A spokesperson for the WWE told us "We are taking this very seriously."